March 29, 2013 — A bill to seal allegations of misconduct inside Georgia’s juvenile prisons remained stuck in committee when the Legislature adjourned last night. Senate Bill 69, sponsored by Jack Murphy and others, would have exempted reports of “abuses or wrongdoing in the juvenile justice system” from disclosure under the Georgia Open Records Act and authorized dismissal of whistleblowers leaking such allegations to the news media or advocacy groups.
March 20, 2013 — Allegations of wrongdoing in the state’s juvenile prisons could be sealed from public view under a bill considered today by a House subcommittee. Witnesses for the state Department of Juvenile Justice said the bill was intended to protect children in custody from retaliation for reporting gang or other criminal activity. The current version of the bill, though, makes no mention of gangs or juvenile crime. Rather, it would exempt from disclosure “the information provided by children who report abuses or wrongdoing in the juvenile justice system.”
Dale Critz Jr. had millions riding on his bid for a presidential pardon. Scion of a prominent family in Savannah, Critz was poised to inherit the luxury car dealerships his grandfather had built. But Critz’s past blocked his way. Years earlier in Florida, he pleaded guilty to a felony for his part in a scheme to falsify loan documents for low-income car buyers. The conviction could have prevented him from owning the family business. So in late 2000, Critz embarked on a campaign for forgiveness, enlisting the help of Republican Rep. Jack Kingston, a family friend, Georgia neighbor, and regular recipient of political donations from Critz and his family.
Documents obtained by ProPublica suggest the government coddled mortgage servicers in its flagship foreclosure prevention program despite frequent and serious errors.
A federal detainee who died in Georgia last year of a treatable heart infection had suffered chest pains for the previous three days, contradicting officials’ prior account of the man’s death, an advocacy group said Thursday.
Open government advocates got an early holiday gift from the White House today. The Office of Management and Budget released the detailed directive to federal agencies on transparency that President Barack Obama called for on his second day in office. The 11-page directive sets out specific tasks for agencies and gives them deadlines.